Albuquerque Public Schools releases 2023-24 bell schedule

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The school year will start completely different for thousands of New Mexican children once this coming summer break is over. Some will sleep in, others will need to get acquainted with their alarm clocks. 

“Based on research, we agree that early start times for adolescents can negatively impact school performance,” APS Chief of Schools, Dr. Channell Segura said. “According to research, adolescents perform better in school and are generally healthier if the school day begins after 8:30 a.m.” 

Starting in the 2023-24 year:

  • High school students will go from 8:40 a.m. to 3:40 p.m. (7:25 a.m. to 2:25 p.m. currently)
  • Middle school students will go from 9:15 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. (8:15 a.m. to 3 p.m. currently)

Elementary school times will be split into two groups:

  • 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. for Group 1
  • 8:05 a.m. to 3:05 p.m. for Group 2 

But many parents wish the current schedule would stay. 

“I just heard about it today and like I said I just don’t like it, I don’t like it,” Washington Middle School parent, Tuyet said. 

Plenty of parents agree with her and vented online. Many brought up how this could impact their work schedules, and they were concerned about after school schedules. 

However, some just don’t understand why this change is even necessary. 

On Monday, APS Superintendent Scott Elder explained the change is based on research showing early start times have negative impacts on school performance, especially for teens who need more sleep. 

But other parents fully support the switch. 

“I think it is good I work at a school, so I think it is good for them to have a little bit of time to wake up and stuff. The kids don’t want to be there early, they are always complaining, I think they are happy about the changes,” Washington Middle School parent Leticia said. 

So far, it sounds like high school students agree. One student who was picking up her younger siblings from middle school said this change might make pick-up, and drop-off more difficult for her family – but she’s looking forward to sleeping in. 

“I think it is better to be honest because waking up at 7 in the morning is hard and getting there on time is pretty hard,” APS high schooler Genesis said. 

We know Rio Rancho Public Schools are flirting with making a similar change. But, a district official says they’re in the very early stages of researching a potential change.